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Heartman

Just for conversation - who's deer is it?

38 posts in this topic

Much has been shared relative to shooting a deer that has been wounded by another - who's deer is it? Many different sides here - I'd never have any issue giving the deer to the person who initially drew blood if it was a mortal wound or not. Particularly if it was a young hunter - I figure I'd be doing them a favor by finishing it off and putting it out of its' misery.

But, if I was sitting in my stand, and shot a crippled deer dead, and the game warden walked up to me, would he say I must legally tag the deer, or could I give it away to another shooter, let's say someone I've never met before? If I kill the animal, doesn't that mean I take possesion of the animal, meaning I have to keep it?

Just a topic for simple discussion - keep it simple while we share our thoughts - open minds will keep us going here - there's no absolutely correct answer for all, eh?

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i would agree with you about givin it to the person who first drew blood. i wouldnt want to start arrguing with someone who has a loaded gun in the woods about whos deer it is. i'd just give it to the person

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When I took the MN DNR Bowhunter's ed they gave us a card that had a number of basic rules, I believe it was called the Bowhunter's Creed. One of those stated that a deer shot more than once belongs to the first person to have made a fatal shot.

Of course, like everything this is one of those things that people will debate endlessly, but the way I look at it, even if you make a good shot, sometimes a deer will go a darn long ways. You should expect that they will be following the blood trail, and will be attempting to recover the animal. Of course there are some folks who wont do this, or might lose the trail, but thats a totally didfferent issue. I personally helped track a yearling doe that went almost 1/2 mile after a perfect double lung shot. How it ever went that far I have no clue. But, that was certainly a case where someone else could have shot the deer a second time whereas, it had already been fatally wounded and was being tracked by the first hunter.

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It is a tough one. The one who draws first blood should get the deer, if it was a fatal shot. Then on the other side, if you saw the animal and didn't notice it was wounded and shot it, I don't think many would give it up very easy, especially if it was real trophy. I would think the warden would say who ever downed the animal would have to tag it.

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That happened up here with another outfitter. The story goes - two guys were hunting together last year. Two brothers in-law, apparently one guy shot a huge deer (gross high 180's) they looked for it and didn't recover it. The next day the brother-in-law sat in the same location and went for a walk mid day and ran across the deer dead, he then shot it and claimed for himself. When they took their deer to the taxidermist (the other guy shot a nice 10 later in the trip) there were magets or some little bug in the nose of the big deer. The taxidermist, told the hunters that the deer was dead at least 24 hrs in the woods before it was found - needless to say they are not hunting together this year.

Not quite the same as a shooting a wounded deer, but its and interesting story.

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Here's a little something to think about. Our Law is generally based on English Common Law. Since the time of William and Mary--Wild animals have occupied a unique place in English law. They owe allegiance to no King-Crown nor Country--they are wild and free. A dead animal however,is a different matter. A dead animal belongs to the land owner--regardless of who killed it. In England anyway. This fact helps to explain the long and, some would say, the honorable tradition of poaching.

On 2 different occasions I helped a young fella who had wounded a deer track them down--one hit a little too far back--classic gut-shot and the other had a broken front leg--hit just a little too far forward. I killed both those deer--just kinda the way it happened--I'd druther the boys made the killing shot but it just didn't work out that way. Both times the boys seemed suprized when I told them to gut thier deer. I guess they thought I would want the darn thing.

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When i was 18 i was in my stand when i heard 3 or 4 shots from behind me and a few minutes later a 6 pointer came running as fast as he could by me (he had his front leg dangling from the under the elbow) so i shot and put him down. These huckleberries(3 of em) come under my stand just POed saying i shot "thier" F-ing deer. Told them to settle down i just stopped him cause he only took off his leg. Still mad he said i was full of sh---he said he hit it 2 times. The deer had one hole and the dangling leg. Last time i hunted that area.

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Like most said, whoever made the first fatal shot. But something about deer makes people get so greedy and angry. Nothing quite like it with other hunters IMO. I'd just as soon not get into an argument with someone over whose deer it is when there are tempers and guns and egos involved. Unless its blantantly obvious that I shot it and put it down, I'm inclined to just say whatever, take the deer and get out of here

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I guess if the other hunter came by and claimed it, I'd give it up with no problem. I would not waste my time looking for the hunter that may have wounded it though.

If the situtation was reversed and someone else shot a deer that I wounded, I'd let him have it. I failed to place my shot accurately and so I lost. If I happened upon him while he was dressing it out or something and he offered it to me, I'd let him have it. If he was generous and insisted I take it, I'd give him the tenderloins as a gift.

Never wounded a deer and never ran into this situation from either side but that's how I believe I would handle it.

Bob

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I had a situation as a young hunter a nice buck came running out. I shot it and dropped it. A little while later the neighbor came walking through the woods. We were talking and the buck got up we both fired at it and it went down again. It would have been my first nice buck but since he shot it first, and they are nice enough to let us hunt the fenceline and shoot on their land I let him take it. I didnt really feel like it was my deer. He would have never retrieved that deer since he was hot on its trail and it was barely wounded. My grandpa was mad about it and said I should have tried to claim it. But for me it was a non-issue.

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I had this situation happen to me about 5 years a go.

I was sitting in my stand and heard one lone shot from a guy in a different party. I knew this guy only had a multi-zone buck tag. I guessed he shot a buck because usually one shot is a good sign. He is about 250 yards away from me in a big woods. About 10 min later this nice 8 point is skirting the edge of me out about 150 yards. Just looking and sniffing around. I called with my can call and he came running in on me. (later found out while watching this buck a doe had came in on my back side) The buck came to about 30 yards, no limp, no blood, no aparent injury. I pulled up and this doe bleats scared the jeepers oot of me but I get a clean shot and drop the buck. I saw the blood spray and I waited in my stand about 10 min and get out to clean it. While I am cleaning it this other hunter came over and was following the tracks of the buck I just shot. He said that he shot at the same buck and thought he hit it. He said that he had one shot at about 40 yards and with a scoped shotgun did not think he could miss it. I showed him my shot and the blood spray and said that we should look for another bullet hole.

We looked and did not find anything. He just chalked it up to buck fever at missing. While gutting the deer we still did not find another hole.

Upon cleaning the deer we did infact find another hole. The hair had pushed down and covered the hole. It had gone in along the back (in the loin) and followed the backbone but never touched it.

I did call the guy who shot it first and let him know that he did hit it and he could have it if he wanted cause he did hit it.

He came over and we talked about it and he said that he would have never got it cause it was not a fatal shot and for me to keep it since I burned my tag on it but was really nice and could not believe I even called him.

I know this was alittle long but it does show that people can do the right thing. Yeah would he ever got the deer MAYBE but I was not going to be the judge of it.

Froggy

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Good judgement there, Froggy. That's what I call sportsmanship. We could use a bit more of that kind of behavior out in the woods.

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Froggy,

After 30 years of deer hunting I can honeslty say I do not believe your story!

This sounds like a good story to tell when you are drinking lots of beer at deer camp!

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Well believe it or not it IS true. I can give you the names of all people involved and wittnesses. We hunt in a party of about 10 and they hunt in a party of about 8 but they hunt in about 4 different area's. I was young once (and still am only 32) and he is about the same age. Sorry if you do not believe it.

Froggy

p.s. I knew someone would not believe it and complain so next time I will just keep my mouth shut!!!!!

p.s.s. I do not drink beer.

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Its all about Ethics...

I believe ya Froggy. Cuz I would have done the same thing.

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this gives me reason enough to shoot greenheads when everyone else in blaze chasin some one elses deer crazy

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As would I, Froggy. I like the following,

"Moral courage is a rare trait".

But you've got it, brother.

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Personally, I believe the person who drew first blood should claim the deer. Within reason of course. If I shoot and wound a deer I should have the opportunity to trail/track and attempt to make a recovery. In most cases, the guy who actually made the killing shot would not have even had the opportunity to kill the deer if the first person would not have wounded it! On the other hand, if the initial guy who wounded the deer gave up on trailing, then it should be fair game! Just my opinion!

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p.s. I knew someone would not believe it and complain so next time I will just keep my mouth shut!!!!!

Na, don't do that. I thought what you added was great and I for one believe you. I wish there were more out there with those kind of ethics.

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Thanks guys. I believe the way I handled the situation was right and I have been working on my 14 year old son to make sure he would do the right thing. These people are our neighbors and it does not pay to start a riff between neighbors. Ethic's is a big deal in my profession and I hope that with what I did maybe it can be passed along and someone else can use good judgment.

Froggy

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I believe ya. I would have done the same. If the other guy was going to be a jack a-- about it, he would have never showed up to claim "his" deer. That's the way people like that are. So why not call and offer like you did. The jack a-- stays home and tells everyone you kept his deer, which you didn't, while the true sportsman shows up and calls it even with you like he did. Good work and nice story.

P.S. People who get worked up about whose deer it is in situations like this are the same people who get worked up about everything else, like when someone cuts in line and they go ballistic instead of simply pointing it out the person's error in judgement and giving them the opportunity to correct their mistake. A deer nor being another spot back in line is worht a heart attack.

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I was 13, my second year out. My dad and I were hunting with a party up by Bagley. making a traditional Sunday noon drive covering over a half section of popple stands and willow/lowland. The old man pops a dandy 8 point(130-140") on the drive. Follows it thru the thickest [PoorWordUsage] and water for a good portion of the section, deer is bleeding hard the whole way. Another shot finally comes, I figure he got it. I actually pick up on the blood trail on my way out(snow on ground). I catch up and here's the old man standing by the buck(wet to up his [PoorWordUsage] from the water, wet down to his [PoorWordUsage] from the sweat) along with the young neighbor kid and his dad. They knew we were making the drive and posted up 100 yards from our last stander. The kid was so excited he shot this buck, but I know from the blood trail that buck wasn't going much further if any. I looked at my dad thinking(almost outloud)What the f?! But he just looked back and said "let 'em take it". I was so P-O'ed at the time, but that was one of the most sportsmanlike things I ever witnessed. No deer is worth squabbling over. I gave up an 11 pointer last fall in a similar situation, 30 years later, and all I could think of saying was "let'em take it". The kids got a nice rack to put on the wall. And BTW, this IS a true story.

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The stories are great, but isn't this a little off the original topic.

The question was posed as to whether or not you shoot a crippled deer under your stand to put it out of its misery and before someone comes up to claim it a Conservation Officer pays you a visit. Are you required to burn your tag on that deer? What if it was a crippled DOE and you didn't want a doe this year? These arguments all seem to be about bucks.

I am curious to see what the response would be. This is not just a sportsmanship question, but a legal one.

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I would not burn my tag on a crippled doe. It might not be the most ethical thing in the world, but deer get wounded all the time by hunters, machinery, and vehicles. I would want to put the deer down, I'd feel like I should put the deer down. But in the end, I'd let the coyotes have it. People might disagree with me, but its what I would honestly do. If it was in my intensive harvest zone, I would shoot it, no questions. In the lottery area, not a chance.

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The stories are great, but isn't this a little off the original topic.

The question was posed as to whether or not you shoot a crippled deer under your stand to put it out of its misery and before someone comes up to claim it a Conservation Officer pays you a visit. Are you required to burn your tag on that deer? What if it was a crippled DOE and you didn't want a doe this year? These arguments all seem to be about bucks.

I am curious to see what the response would be. This is not just a sportsmanship question, but a legal one.

Very good question Troy. I think if you dropped it and a DNR came up you would have to burn your tag, therefore making it your deer. It all comes down to sportsmanship if another guy comes up and says he shot it before you tag it. Do you give it to him or not? Up to you. If I didn't burn a tag yet, you could have it, but if I burned on, then it's mine.

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